Native American

 


Dawson County Sheriff Ross Canen sat down and ordered a coffee at a small-town diner on the edge of the eastern Montana badlands. The walls were lined with portraits of Miss Montana going back to the 1950’s — young white women with silver tiaras and perfect teeth.

Andi Clifford

On the Wind River Indian Reservation, there have been a string of events to stir up excitement for the upcoming mid-term election. These events have included games, candidate speeches, and food. Securing the votes from the Wind River Reservation could win two Northern Arapaho candidates seats in Wyoming's legislature.

The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear a case early next year that could have big implications for how the country interprets Native American treaty rights.


On a recent Sunday evening around dusk, Willie Grayeyes stood on a sagebrush and juniper-studded mesa, scanning the southeast Utah landscape. It was a place the Navajo Democrat’s family had lived for generations and where he’s hoping to be part of a political first.

Flickr Creative Commons/John

The nonprofit MoFi helps leverage new market tax credits to fund rural community projects in low-income areas around the Rocky Mountain region, and now they’re helping to open a 24-hour childcare center and expand a health clinic for the Northern Arapaho Tribe.

Johnathon Labillois

Amber Alerts are messages sent over the radio, internet, television, and text message to notify the public when there is a child abduction emergency. These alerts can be powerful tools to locate a missing child. But right now, the Wind River Reservation doesn’t have that service.

USFWS Mountain-Prairie

The federal government recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding document, agreeing to support efforts to develop tourism opportunities in Indian Country. 

A Texas federal judge just has declared unconstitutional a decades-old law that aims to keep Native American children within their own communities.

On Friday, an intergovernmental organization hosted a hearing in Boulder, Colorado on the ongoing crisis of missing and murdered Indigenous women in the U.S. That group faces some of the highest violence and sexual assault rates in the nation.

Piikani National Administration

Native American tribes are celebrating the decision by a U.S. district court judge to re-list the Yellowstone grizzly bear as threatened. Numerous tribes sued the federal government to stop the de-listing and over 200 U.S. and Canadian tribes signed a grizzly bear treaty to protect the species. Blackfeet member Tom Rodgers is an advisor for the Rocky Mountain Tribal Leaders. He said efforts to protect the grizzly galvanized tribes around the world.

Matt Celeskey

This summer two professors excavated the fossilized remains of a Phytosaur on the Wind River Indian Reservation without explicit permission from the Northern Arapaho or Eastern Shoshone tribes. 

Recently Rebecca West, the curator of the Plains Indian Museum, discovered an unique feather bonnet in the Paul Dyck Buffalo Culture Collection. The bonnet didn’t look like any of the typical bonnets seen previously.

The National Park Service is giving museums and universities across the country grants to return ancestral artifacts and human remains taken from Native American tribes over the years.

IMDb

The independent film Neither Wolf Nor Dog is set to screen in Jackson this week. Set in Indian Country, it showcases Native actors and explores the history of the Wounded Knee massacre.

University of Wyoming


Orientation is a common activity for freshmen at any university. While there are students who don’t want to go, some relish the chance to meet new people and well… orient themselves. University of Wyoming President Laurie Nichols set a goal of increasing the number of Native Americans attending UW, especially since enrollment of tribal members recently reached an all-time low. Wyoming Public Radio’s Taylar Stagner participated in the Native American Research Center’s first-ever orientation. The goal is to make students comfortable from day one. 

Walking through forests across the Mountain West, you might not realize you’re walking past historical artifacts big enough to crush you. These artifacts are pine and cedar trees that have had their bark peeled off in a special way. The trees are a bit of a mystery to archaeologists, and one they’re running out of time to solve.

A recently published paper argues that more self-determination and frank discussions about structural racism could help improve access to health care for indigenous populations.

Last week, Governor Matt Mead approved new social studies content and performance standards. The changes are the result of the 2017 Indian Education for All Act, which requires schools statewide to teach the history and culture of the Eastern Shoshone and Northern Arapaho. 

The Oglala Lakota leader Crazy Horse helped lead The Battle of the Greasy Grass. That the tribe’s name for what non-Natives call the Battle of Little Big Horn. Crazy Horse has had many biographies written about him, but never from someone related to the leader.

Floyd Clown and William Matson have changed that.

The two have recently collaborated on a book, Crazy Horse: The Lakota Warrior’s Life and Legacy, an oral history of Crazy Horse from his direct decedents. Only recently has the family felt that it was time to tell their story.

Wyoming Humanities Council

For years, Wind River’s tribal advocates have suggested that Wyoming kids lack access to authentic education about the state’s Native American heritage. Some said that has led to insensitive or even racist encounters when tribal sports teams travel to other school districts.

Wyoming Humanities Council

Last year, lawmakers passed legislation to bring more education about Native American history and culture to Wyoming students. It’s called Indian Education For All and it fulfills social studies requirements. To help with the effort, the Wyoming Humanities Council has created a fold-out kiosk that will be exhibited in schools and libraries around the state starting next month.

The Paul Dyck Plains Indian Buffalo Culture Collection, acquired through the generosity of the Dyck family and additional gifts of the Nielson Family and the Estate of Margaret S. Coe

At the turn of the century, ethnologists and anthropologists were trying to collect objects from different Plains Indian cultures, since they believed the cultures would not survive. The “laundry list,” as it was referred to, attempted to collect everything special and unique from the disappearing cultures. This usually included fancier items like beaded clothing, since they were considered to be more aesthetically pleasing.

Ivory Brien is Really Good at Basketball, Flathead Reservation, Montana, 2016 by Sue Reynolds.

The new website Everyday Native highlights the use of photography and poetry to help bridge the gap between Native and non-Native students alongside their teachers. 

Yet another Indigenous woman has gone missing in the Mountain West.

Jermaine Charlo disappeared near a grocery store in Missoula, Montana last month. The 23-year-old is the 13th native woman to go missing in the state since January.

A bipartisan group of indigenous state lawmakers just published a letter condemning the President’s use of the name “Pocahontas” in a recent Montana rally. They say it hurts the already-wounded image of Native American women.

A controversy over the names of two landmarks in Yellowstone National Park highlight a forgotten genocide in the U.S. and how historical awareness, conflicting narratives and misinformation help muddy the waters.


The Bureau of Land Management planned to lease about 18,000 acres of land in southern Colorado for oil and gas drilling. Now, the bureau says it’s holding off so it can consult with the Navajo Nation.

Jessica Flock


A recent report from a non-profit group aimed at erasing misconceptions about Native Americans says Indigenous people still face discrimination and invisibility.

There’s a storm rolling in over the Blackfeet Indian Reservation in Montana. The clouds are low and dark as distant lightning cracks over a green prairie. 

Wade Running Crane is starting to get wet.

“This is like a sign from Ashley that she’s here,” he said.

Darrah Perez

Nationally, there’s a shortage of about 68,000 homes on tribal reservations, and on the Wind River Reservation, both the Northern Arapaho and the Eastern Shoshone tribes are hundreds of homes short. That’s led to severe overcrowding and homelessness there.

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